West keynote speaker at county Republicans’ annual fish fry

By PAMELA GRANT
Cove Leader-Press

Hundreds of Republicans showed up to support their party, enjoy the company, and partake in some delicious food on Saturday.
The Republicans held their 2017 Coryell County Republican Party Fish Fry/Barbecue at the Gatesville Civic Center Saturday night. The event also marked the 150th anniversary of the founding of the Republican party of Texas.
“The number one reason why we do these events is to allow like-minded individuals to gather in fellowship,” said Jack Barcroft. “The primary will be here before you know it and I would urge everyone to register to vote that isn’t already and everyone who is registered to exercise their right to vote.”
Guest speaker, former Florida Congressman and Ret. Lt. Col. Allen West spoke while participants enjoyed fried fish and/or barbcue. West spoke of the dangers of turning states “blue” and the reality that Texas does have the potential to go blue. 
“If you are not getting people to understand what makes Texas special, what makes that lone star shine so bright…If we’re not teaching those lessons to people that are coming here, then the next thing you know the entire population corridor down I-35 will be the complete difference, the complete antithesis, totally antithetical to that which Texas stands for.”
West spoke on the current issue on Confederate memorials.
“Last year, no one cared!” said West.
West speculated that it’s becoming an issue now because of the electoral base of the states with the largest amounts of Confederate memorials. Virginia has the most memorials, and Texas is in third with 178 memorials. 
He spoke of economic prosperity and liberty. He called it the Alamo of these present times. He warned that if we’re not careful, we’ll see our rights taken away.
“If you want to continue to see economic growth and prosperity here in Texas, you cannot allow this mentality that believes in the redistribution of wealth…You cannot allow a mentality that believes that the best thing for the individual is to be dependent on government,” said West. “That’s not what being independent is…People are sitting back and waiting for someone to provide them something…We have to turn that around.”
West called for unity in the Republican party and making a stand for what they believe is right, and he encouraged them to teach the next generation about what liberty is and why it’s important to protect it.
West’s speech concluded to a standing ovation. One audience member even asked him to run for president.
“It was very good. I thought he was very articulate. He actually spoke from the heart, and he spoke the truth,” said Coryell County Sheriff Scott Williams about West’s speech. As for the food, Williams said, “The fish fry was excellent. J&M did an excellent job.”

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